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Jewelle Gomez        

Writer, Activist & Author

Jewelle Gomez is an author, poet, critic and playwright. She lived and worked in New York City for twenty-two years working in public television, theater as well as philanthropy before relocating to the West Coast. Her writing---fiction, poetry, essays and cultural criticism---has appeared in a wide variety of venues, both feminist and mainstream. Her work often intersects and addresses multiple ethnicities as well as the ideals of lesbian/feminism and issues. She has been interviewed for several documentaries focused on LGBT rights and culture.

She is the author of the double Lambda Award-winning novel, The Gilda Stories: A Novel from Firebrand Books. Her adaptation of the book for the stage - Bones & Ash: a Gilda Story - was performed by the Urban Bush Women company in 13 U.S. cities. She is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts literature fellowship and two California Arts Council fellowships.

Gomez was raised by her great-grandmother, Grace, who was born on Indian land in Iowa to an African-American mother and Ioway father. Grace returned to New England before she was fourteen, when her father died and was married to John E. Morandus, a Wampanoag and descendant of Massasoit, the sachem for whom Massachusetts was named.

Growing up in the 1950s and 1960s she was shaped socially and politically by the close family ties with her great grandmother, Grace and grandmother Lydia. Their history of independence as well as marginalization in an African-American community are referenced throughout her work. "Grace A." from the collection Don't Explain is an early example. During her high school and college years Gomez was involved with Black political and social movements which is reflected in much of her writing. Subsequent years in New York City she spent in Black theatre including work with the Frank Silvera Writers Workshop and many years as a stage manager for off Broadway productions.

During this time she became involved in lesbian feminist activism and magazine publication. She was a member of the CONDITIONS, a lesbian feminist literary magazine. More of Gomez's recent writing has begun to reflect her Native American (Ioway, Wampanoag) heritage.


Femmepire Records: Jewelle Gomez on Adornment and the Point of ...
Here's Jewelle Gomez, the dynamo femme activist, poet, playwright, and author of the double Lambda Award-winning novel, The Gilda Stories. Her adaptation ...

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